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The Biology of Belief

Excerpt from Daily Cures, Wisdom for Healthy Aging by Connie Mason Michaelis

The Biology of Belief is a most interesting, if not a life-changing, book written by Bruce Lipton, Ph.D., a renowned cellular biologist. Lipton demonstrates how the new science of epigenetics has revolutionized our understanding of the link between mind and matter. Although the introduction says that the author uses simple language to educate his readers, I would have to debate the term simple. Being a biology major in college did not prepare me to grasp the concept of epigenetics, but I knew that it has enormous implications for our lives. He says identical DNA will modify itself according to the environment to which it is exposed. So (epi)genetics implies there is something higher than basic genetics at work in our bodies. The laboratory experiments are fascinating and substantiate that what we believe has enormous if not ultimate, power over our lives.

That leads me to think about what we believe about aging in our society. Becca Levy, an associate professor of psychology at the Yale School of Public Health and author of a current study on aging, says, “Negative stereotyping is a public health issue. Ultimately it is possible that such a constant cultural mindset perpetuates an age-based stereotype threat (ABST), along with prejudice and discrimination that is nearly as insidious as those surrounding racism or gender inequality.” Do you think that is an exaggeration? When you compare the Western cultural view to other places in the world where a lifespan of 100 energetic years is the expectation, not the exception, their belief systems are different, not their genetic makeup. We may not be able to change the cultural beliefs we are exposed to, but we can take charge of our own belief system and see our aging process as a gift. We don’t have to accept that our lives will deteriorate and, ultimately, we will be useless and dependent. What do you believe about aging?

"What you believe might be wrong; what you don't believe might be right! Don't be so sure of things. Open your mind to all the possibilities." Mehmet ildam

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